Mirza Adeeb, PP, BA (Hon), (Urdu: مرزا ادیب—Mirzā Adīb; 4 April 1914 — 31 July 1999), also known as Meerza Adeeb, (میرزا ادیب—Mīrzā Adīb), was a Pakistani Urdu writer of drama and short story. His plays and short stories won him six prizes and awards from the Pakistan Writers' Guild.
Mirza Adeeb's birth name was Mirza Dilawer, but he came to be known in the literary world as Mirza Adeeb. (Mirza denotes the rank of a high nobleman or Prince, and Adeeb means 'Litterateur'.)
He was born in 1914, in Lahore, British India to Mirza Basheer Ali. He attended Government Islamia High School, Bhati Gate, Lahore. He got his Bachelor of Arts degree from Islamia College, Lahore. In the beginning, he made poetry his device, but later pursued his interest in playwriting as his métier.
Later, he switched to writing plays about everyday events and incidents taking place in the society; focusing more on social problems and quotidian issues. His later works were pragmatist and verisimilitudinous. He used simple and everyday language in his plays, which enabled them to get a greater audience. Moreover, he had begun writing one-act dramas, which made them easier to broadcast over radio and television. When he affiliated himself with Radio Pakistan, many of his plays were broadcast and they gained popularity among the masses. He is listed as a prominent Urdu playwright of the Modern Era.
His main works, other than dramas, include stories and biographies. He also wrote critical essays and commentaries on books, besides writing columns in newspapers. He was also influenced by the Taraqqī-Pasasnd Tẹḥrīk (ترقّی-پسند تحریک—Urdu for Progressive Movement). Besides, he also discharged his duties as the editor of many magazines, of which the most notable is Adab-e Laṭīf, (ادبِ لطیف—Urdu for 'Humorous Literature'). He also translated some American stories to Urdu. Furthermore, he wrote numerous stories for children.
Following are the main features of Mirza Adeeb's style of writing:
- Objectivity: His plays had a strong sense of objectivity in them.
- Riveting dialogues: The dialogues he chose were grounded, yet captivating. Each character spoke according to his/her social status and his dramas did not contain artificial, literary dialogues. His dialogues also contained witty repartees and striking replies.
- Versatility: His story lines include a variety of topics, taken from the prosaic lives on common people.
- Pragmatism: Rather than focusing on characterisation, as did many of his contemporaries, he focused more on events.
- Humanitarianism: His plays and stories have a humanitarian and philanthropic outlook.
- His selective drama-collections are:
- His selective short-story collections are:
- His collection of personal biographies is 'Nāxun kā Qarź (ناخن کا قرض, Urdu for 'the Debt of the Fingernail').
- Miṫṫī kā Diyā (مٹّی کا دیا, Urdu for 'the Earthen Lamp') is his autobiography.
- Presidential Award for playwriting, 1969
- Pride of Performance Award for literature in 1981
- His famous play, Pas-e Pardah (1967), won him the Ādamjī Adabī Ēwārḋ (آدم جی ادبی ایوارڈ—Adamjee Literary Award) in 1968